A Child's Normal Heart

The heart is the hardest working muscle in the human body. Located almost in the center of the chest, the heart of a child is about the size of his/her fist.

A child's heart works just as hard as an adult's heart. In fact, a baby's heart may beat up to 190 times a minute, while an adult's heart usually beats between 60 and 100 times a minute. The rate at which the heart pumps gradually slows down from birth to adolescence. The heart rate constantly fluctuates depending on the cardiovascular demands of the body at that moment.

Healthy Heart

The cardiovascular system is responsible for circulating blood (oxygen) throughout the body.

The heart has four chambers:

  1. Upper right atrium
  2. Upper left atrium
  3. Lower right ventricle
  4. Lower left ventricle

The flow of blood through the heart is controlled by four heart valves. The valves open and close as the blood is pumped through the heart. Each valve has a set of flaps (also called leaflets or cusps). All valves have three flaps, except for the mitral valve. Normally, it only has two. As the heart beats it creates pressure that opens the valves which allows blood to flow through the flaps. They make sure the blood only flows in one direction.

  1. Tricuspid valve (between the right atrium and right ventricle)
  2. Pulmonary valve (between the right ventricle and pulmonary artery)
  3. Mitral valve (between the left atrium and left ventricle)
  4. Aortic valve (between the left ventricle and the aorta)

The right side receives blood from the body and pumps it to the lungs. The left side receives the blood from the lungs and is pumped out into the body. The heart receives blood from veins and sends blood out through arteries.

Keep Exploring

Heart Rhythm Disorders
Millions of people experience irregular or abnormal heartbeats, called arrhythmias, at some point in their lives. Most of the time, they are harmless and happen in healthy people free of heart disease. However, some abnormal heart rhythms can be serious or even deadly. Having other types of heart disease can also increase the risk of arrhythmias.
Pediatrics and Congenital Heart Disease (CHD)
This section is for pediatric patients and families living with heart rhythm disorders and heart rhythm disorders related to congenital heart disease (CHD).
Early Warning Signs
If you are experiencing a racing, pounding, rumbling or flopping feeling in your chest or if you have been fainting, having repeated dizzy spells, feeling lightheaded or you are extremely fatigued, it's time to see a doctor to discuss your heart health.
Common Treatments
Learning about the underlying cause of any heart rhythm disorder provides the basis for selecting the best treatment plan. Information and knowledge about care options, and their risks and benefits help you work with your health care provider to make the best choices.
Lifestyle
Since other heart disorders increase the risk of developing abnormal heart rhythms, lifestyle changes often are recommended. Living a “heart healthy” lifestyle can ease the symptoms experienced with heart rhythm disorders and other heart disorders, and can be beneficial to overall patient health.
The Normal Heart
The heart is a fist-sized muscle that pumps blood through the body 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, without rest. The normal heart is made up of four parts: two atria on the top of the heart (right atrium and left atrium), and two ventricles (right ventricle and left ventricle) which are the muscular chambers on the bottom of the heart that provide the major power to pump blood.